This walk takes around 2 hours to complete, at a leisurely pace. As the terrain can be quite hard-going in places - especially if it's rained recently. It's about 5km in length, or 3.5 miles. There are plenty of things to see, and some amazing views of the coastline. I think it's best walked clockwise - as described below. However, there's no reason not to tackle it the other way around.
Robin Hood's Bay Village Hall Car Park
Park in the Village Hall car park. It's pay and display, but free through the winter. Check the machine on arrival to ensure you pay the correct fee. There are also public toilets here.
With your back to the toilets, head out of the car park and turn left. Follow the road as it drops downhill to join the main road from Whitby. On the opposite side of the road you'll see The Grosvenor.
Cross the main road - watch out for cars coming down the hill. Walk along Mount Pleasant North.
Join The Cinder Track
As you get to the end of Mount Pleasant North, follow the track up to the left. Then take the second right onto the Cinder Track. This section of the Cinder Track has been recently repaired, with improved drainage. It's a fairly wide path, but be aware of cyclists and other walkers.
Depending on the time of year you might find brambles in the bushes to your right. You'll also see the Robin Hood's Bay vineyard in the fields to your left, as you walk along the path.
Once the embankment disappears you'll get some great views down across the fields. If you look towards the edge of the cliff you may spot walkers on the Cleveland Way. You'll be heading back that way before too long!
Keep following the Cinder Track, it runs steadily uphill, but it's not too steep. After a mile or so you'll pass through another cutting, with an embankment to the right. Shortly after this you'll find a gate on the right hand side. There should also be a National Trust sign - 'Bay Ness'.
Cut Down onto the Cleveland Way
Head through the gate. The footpath runs down the cliff and is quite steep. It follows the dry stone wall to the left. Keep to the footpath, do not be tempted to wander off into the bracken.
Take this section slowly. Enjoy the view out across the Bay. Watch out for potholes and uneven ground.
Turn Right onto the Cleveland Way
As you reach the Cleveland Way turn right, heading back towards Robin Hood's Bay. This section of the Cleveland Way can be quite hard work - depending on the time of year.
Be careful of the edge. Often it's not as dramatic as it appears, but in places it is a sheer drop - don't get complacent!
Walking this route clockwise means that you're about to enjoy one of the best views on the Yorkshire coast. Provided the visibility is good! Follow the path, enjoying the views out to see and back inland towards the Cinder Track.
As you approach Rocket Post Field you'll suddenly get a glimpse of Ravenscar's dramatic headland. Jutting out into the North Sea, a few miles away as the crow flies. Ravenscar has an interesting history and makes for a great location for a walk and a picnic.
Rocket Post Field
You'll see the rocket post from a distance away. No longer used, but standing in its original position. The rocket post formed part of the launch mechanism for an innovative life-saving system. Rockets were launched from the cliff top, out to stricken vessels. The rockets carried a line which was then used to haul a rope from the land out to see. Once secured passengers could be hauled to safety, over the water.
For a more detailed explanation and some images which show it in use see the informtion board next to the bench. The bench is also a great spot to stop for a rest - you'll be looking down over the Old Village of Robin Hood's Bay. You'll also be able to see the sea wall, preventing further erosion pulling more homes into the sea.
Back to the Car Park
Following the footpath through Rocket Post Field you'll pass through a gate. The path now runs in front of a few houses, whose gardens will be to your left. You'll soon see Mount Pleasant North, and your way back to the car park.
Enjoy Robin Hood's Bay
Of course, you don't need to finish you walk at this point. Why not head down the hill, passing Station Road Stores and The Victoria Hotel. At the top of Bay Bank you'll find a childrens play area - a nice reward for any children you've made walk the cliff path!
Opposite the park is The Fish Box, serving excellent fish and chips. They have some outside seating as well as inside - great if the weather's bad.
Heading down the hill you'll pass Jessica Hogarth's shop on the right hand side. Before you know it you'll be in amongst the ancient cottages and alleyways of Bay. Enjoy stepping back in time - back to a time of smugglers and seafarers.
There's a good coffee hut on the Quarterdeck. From here you can enjoy excellent views across the beach (or the sea) to Boggle Hole and Ravenscar.